three hulls, two people, one trip around the world…

As per usual – Episode Two

Ice-cream-maker in the technical room

The deliveries that reached us made sure that Mathias was busy with handicrafts again. One of his achievements is the assembly of the small inverter from 24 V to 110 V. This meant that we could use the ice-cream-maker in the intended way. It is located in the technical room, but that doesn’t matter, because you don’t have to supervise it. I can fill the container in the kitchen and then carry it down the ladder to the technical room. First we made a sorbet from an overripe pineapple again and then tried strawberry ice cream. That turned out really well and was super creamy. Now we can better cope with the pudding emergency. Freely adapted from Marie Antoinette “If the people have no bread, let them eat cake”, we say: “When the pudding is gone, we have to eat ice cream” 😉


There are new fans at various strategic points, not only in the kitchen but also in my corner of the sofa the airflow now reaches me. The climate here can be trying without air conditioning. Every breeze is welcome. It is especially difficult for North Germans that are used to nasty weather. Recently we watched several North German crime series in the evening via media library. And almost got jealous of the people with scarves and jackets in beautiful autumnal surroundings. The worst thing is that the people in the series eat Fischbrötchen all the time. Recently we watched two different series and in both of them Fischbrötchen were eaten. We had no other choice than to gather the ingredients here as close as possible and to prepare our own Fischbrötchen. 


The alternator, which should charge the 24 V batteries while the engine is running, had refused to work. Mathias was searching for clues for quite a while, finally he contacted Pochon, the company that had made the electrical installations on our boat. This contact was not successful either. Mathias had to deal directly with Mastervolt. The remote diagnosis and various measurements that Mathias carried out led to the conclusion that the alternator should be replaced. This is a warranty case. It only remains to be seen how long it will take and how well this delivery will reach us. It will probably be sent from the US. 


More little problems

Computers – wonders of technology – and guarantee for many hours of fun entertainment. Used for communication and also an important tool for creative activities. B u t , woe betide something is not working !!!!!! Then these things become a source of endless frustration!

Have you read the Kangaroo Chronicles? They describe very nicely how the author feels when he tries to get his computer to do something that the machine doesn’t want to allow. In the end he pulls the plug and has to wait another two hours until the internal battery is empty. Only then he finally gets the upper hand over the device. I also fully understand him when he uses swear words when the DVD player doesn’t allow him to skip over the copyright warning. I once read that stress is caused when something doesn’t work as you expect it to. And what can be worse than a stuuuuuuuupid machine that doesn’t do what it should? It really is not on! Aren’t there enough big and small problems in day-to-day life?

So you can imagine how I felt when the functionality of some of the keys on my computer slowly ceased. (I wrote this text on Mathias’ old computer.) It started with the fact that suddenly the right shift key did not work anymore. This was irritating, but in an amazingly short time my fingers developed a system to be able to create the capital letters on the left side with the left shift key. After some time, however, “e” and “t” also began to stop responding. That is already worse. I tried to take the keys up and clean them underneath. Success was limited. Sometimes they worked quite well, then they stopped again. Googling only brought articles about Apple computers that have problematic keyboards and which you can have replaced up to 4 years later. Hm, my computer is 8 years old. And anyway, Corona, Lock Down, how about a do-it-yourself tip? I’m getting upset again. Mathias is already used to this state of mine. Whenever there’s an update for Final Cut Pro (my video editing program), Mathias goes into hiding, because at first I bitch a lot about the changes, until I get used to them and sometimes I even find the one or other new feature not bad at all. Except for Apple’s clever idea to completely change the way the movies are saved. This has led to the fact that my earlier film projects can no longer be edited. But that’s another story whose solution is still pending. Right now, I am still working on my acute problem with the keyboard. First emergency aid will probably be to try to get an external keyboard. There are already some shops open that could have some. But it must be a USB keyboard. Bluetooth connectivity of my Mac is another battleground. Sometimes it works well and sometimes it is just miffed and doesn’t want to connect at all, no matter in which order the devices are turned on…


This reminds me of a story from my time at NDR: My printer no longer worked properly, the prints became weak and illegible. I tried the usual remedies, change the cartridge – that was not the reason. Reset, unplug the printer and wait several minutes and similar things. Then I got help from two colleagues, but it did not get better. Finally I called our service hotline. The helper suggested first aid actions, which I had tried several times before. I told him that I and two colleagues had already tried them independently one after the other and that I was now in the state of mind, that the next attempt at repair would be to throw the printer out of the window. Thereupon the service employee said: “Alright, I’ll come and bring a replacement unit right away.” I credited him highly for not wanting to retry the entire first aid procedure himself, but for providing a quick remedy. This circumstance shows very well that the service staff already had a lot of experience. On the one hand, they probably knew that the old printer series I had was long past its sell-by date. On the other hand, they must have often had to deal with completely frustrated colleagues. What’s reassuring is that I’m obviously not the only one who lets herself be driven nuts by such unruly machines. 

If any of you know how to persuade the “qwertzuio” key row to work again, I’d be very grateful for any executable tips !


There is still mail and packages arriving in Panama. From France a parcel has been sent to us with DHL. We still have to see where we can receive it. These are the Escape-Hatches, emergency exits which every multihull boat must have in case it should capsize. Ours were recalled by the manufacturer and are now being replaced by other models. In one catamaran, the glass in the hatch had been pushed out by the waves and the boat then filled up through this unwanted opening. This is not a Neel problem, the hatch company supplies all kinds of manufacturers and it also affects many catamaran models. 

The life buoy has a new cartridge and we managed to fold it back together. The pictorial folding instructions from the Internet offered a nice little puzzle task until you had correctly followed them. At first we thought that the buoy could not be used anymore because the locking ring for the cartridge could not be found. Reading the instructions three times resulted in an aha-moment: The bolt should be attached to the outside of the bracket. Maybe the very outer holder on the railing is meant? Yes, lo and behold, there was a bolt hanging there, which was tied to a retaining strap. All’s well that ends well. 


Pictures of the bike route:

The bike tour was rained off:


One circumstance that caused mixed feelings is the fact that we had to hand in our key card for the gate of the marina. We drive with the dinghy into the marina and then go ashore there. For this we still had a key card. Recently I was stopped during shore leave and the lady in charge demanded her key card back quite briskly. She didn’t expect our stay during the corona times would be so long and wanted us to use the dinghy dock and pay a fee for it. A demand that I can  understand very well. Only, in that moment I felt a bit taken by surprise and she had no time to talk to me about a new arrangement. If you leave the dinghy at the dock, it should cost $10 by now, or $52 a week. What happens if you just drop somebody off, I don’t know. Since then, we’ve already gone ashore twice over the dinghy dock in the marina, but there was no one there to talk to about payment or new arrangements. 

Emotionally, we feel less welcome here. In addition, there are considerations about options that remain when our visa for Panama expires. So far there is no regulation whether there will be an automatic extension for the visas or if one has simply to pay the usual penalty of $50 per month. An inquiry with the authorities has only revealed that you can get an exit permit if your country reopens the borders. It is not clear whether “your country” should be the home country or the country you want to travel to. Since we cannot travel to our home country by boat, we assume that the new country of travel is meant. In Costa Rica some easing of Corona measures have taken place. Air travellers are admitted who can show an appropriate insurance, come from certain states and bring a negative corona test from the home country. For entry by sea nothing is fixed yet. The next deadline for further relaxation in Costa Rica is currently September 1st. Nicaragua is already open. But I haven’t researched the supply situation there yet and it’s not exactly around the corner. 

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This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Mark Goodall


    I would love it if you could show more of the boat and sailing, different conditions – thanks !

    1. trimaran-san

      Hi Mark, thanks for this feedback. Due to corona, we are not allowed to sail, currently, so there cannot be any update on that, unfortunately. But have you seen our short sailing movies?

      We have started collecting raw material of the interior as well, so in the near future we are planing to show short movies of various features of our boat inside.

      Cheers, Mathias

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